Heavy Periods and Fibroids
Q: I've given birth to two healthy children, my first when I was 23 and the
second at age 31. I hemorrhaged after both deliveries. My doctor blamed it on
a fibroid and told me I have nothing to worry about. But for the past year,
my periods have been extremely heavy and sometimes they contain several clots.
Could this be due to the fibroids?
Dr. Donnica: Heavy menstrual bleeding can be due to several factors,
and fibroids are the most common reason. Fibroids are simply benign growths-usually
within the uterus. Fibroids occur in 20 to 50% of women, depending upon age
and race. African-American women, for example, are three times more likely than
Caucasian women to have fibroids.
While fibroids are the reason given for 2 out of 3 hysterectomies, there are
now several less invasive options for treating them. These options include drug
therapy, uterine artery embolization, endometrial ablation, and minimally invasive
surgical procedures using the hysteroscope or laparascope for removing only
the fibroid ("myomectomy") or for removing the uterus but leaving
the cervix in place. You should discuss this situation with your physician and
ask which treatment options are best for you.
Created: 7/11/2003  - Donnica Moore, M.D.